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2014: Dattch’s year of Americans, lesbiqueers, investors, strippers, and a new office

Dec 28, 2014

From Robyn
2014 has been our first whole year as a company, and girl, has it been a big one. As we gear up for what is no doubt going to be an even bigger 2015, I thought it would be cool to share with you a few highlights of what can happen when you work on a lesbian app for 365 days.

Falling in love with the USA.

On Feb 28th we launched Dattch in San Francisco. The decision to do this was made 48 hrs in advance of the launch so needless to say we weren’t overly prepared but it was the single greatest decision we’ve made. From the day we met you Yanks, we’ve been in love with you. I remember pitching Dattch at Lesbians Who Tech and being blown away by the reaction. Fist pumping, woops, lols. It was unreal. And the love affair has only grown since then.

We hit LA next – the femmest of them all – there were strippers at every party, bandage dresses and stilettos at every turn, beaches and sunshine, WeHo, kale and juices.

Next on the tour was Florida – Girls In Wonderland. I’ve literally never seen so many half naked lesbians in one place at one time. Relentless partying, day time chilling. Florida, you really know how to hit it hard. I think I left a shell of the woman that I was. But with a glorious new tan and a few new phone numbers.

Last one for the year was New York, a city that speaks to my heart. This is where I had the gayest week of my life. New York Pride is incomparable. Literally a WEEK of parties. From pools to parades, we handed out flyers to every dyke in sight. The community up there was one of the most open, supportive and exciting I’ve seen and I can’t wait to head back soon.

As we gear up for next year all we can say is – America – we are coming for you. We’ve had hundreds of thousands of requests to launch across the rest of the country and we can’t wait to see you all throughout 2015. With our first launch planned for March, it’s going to be a year that sees the app in the hands of every queer woman in America. Are you ready for it? Because we certainly are.

Finding the queer community.

I’ve loved getting to learn and understand the queer community, structure and politics of America. It totally took me by surprise just how different things are between the UK and the US but it’s been a real eye opener. We’ve met some of the most helpful, collaborative partners this year. There’s such a genuine desire to improve the community for everyone across the world and we can’t wait to kick off next year with some great collaborations. From Beijing to New York to LA to Miami to London to San Francisco to Sydney, we’ve met women that have blown our minds. Their creativity, willingness to give, inspirational ideas and dirty dirty sense of humour has made this year one to never forget. Thank you for everything you’ve given and everything we will create together next year.

Building an American team.

As we saw our growth shooting up all over the US, we made the decision to get a bit of American help. We may speak the same language but we really do not speak the same language. “College, chips, cilantro and soccer,” I’m learning American as fast as I can but to help me on the way we have Kacie and Yarin, our incredible new teammates. Leading up Partnerships and Design, these two killer girls have jumped in at the deep end. You’ll be seeing and hearing a lot from both of them as we become the business we want to be for you next year. We’ve officially opened an office in San Francisco and can’t wait to grow the team there over the next few months.

Last but not least you – the year our users grew.

Ok so it may only be our first full year, but it’s been our biggest year of growth to date 🙂 We’ve grown over 1000% and things don’t seem to be slowing down. Now, we’re not a large and loaded startup (yet). The purse strings are tight and we’ve been crazy resourceful to grow this app with what little we had. With no marketing budget, our growth has completely come from you, our incredible community. Without you we would literally be nothing so as we finally get ready to grow the business on speed in 2015, we want to thank you for all of your support. You’ve handled the highs and the lows, the bugs and the breaks and you’re still here with us telling your friends how much you love us. We can’t thank you enough for your support and only hope to show you an even bigger and better year in 2015 as we enter our next era.

So what’s up 2015?

You’re going to see some big things coming from us next year. I don’t mean “big” like new updates, I mean entirely business-changing big. We’re working pretty intensely over the coming months to prepare something huge for you. We’ve already spoken with hundreds of users about where they want us to take the app but now it’s your turn. If you want to be a part of our journey and direct us on the kind of app that you want to be using then please tell us here. This is your chance. Everything is about to change but to do that, we need your input. Please take 2 minutes to tell us what you really want from us. We’re waiting for your answers before we start creating whatever comes next so get those fingers tap tapping at the keys.

Thank you’s.

Before I peace out I just want to say a huge personal thanks to the people that got us through this year. When people say starting a business is hard, they are understating it. It’s like the most intense drug you can find. The highs are mind blowing: couples move in together, women fall in love, coming out stories that have brought us to tears. But the lows are harrowingly brutal. And they couldn’t be handled without having a team like we do. To Rok, Vesna, Emily, Barbara, Adam, Yarin and Kacie, Thank you. This would never have happened without you. And to all our investors, advisors, supporters and most importantly our users, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.

2015, Let’s do this.

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